ROCHESTER, Minn. (KTTC) -- Most pundits Monday agree that the decision to remove Tubby Smith as head coach of the men's basketball team at the University of Minnesota was made before Sunday night's loss to Florida in the NCAA Tournament.
Minnesota Athletic Director Norwood Teague said Monday he felt the program failed to reach expectations-- which, ultimately, cost Tubby his job
Smith ends his tenure at the U with 124 victories and 81 defeats in six years on the bench.
Tubby won 20-games five times but Minnesota never finished with a Big Ten record above .500 and finished 7th place or worse 4-times in his six seasons. Smith was 46-and-62 in Conference play.
This year's team started 15-and-1 and was ranked as high as eighth, but struggled through the Big Ten schedule. The season did include a signature win over top-ranked Indiana.
Commentators Monday said there's no question Tubby ran a clean program, and most agree he left the team in better shape than when he arrived.
Smith's checkbook will also leave in better shape, too-- his contract stipulated he'll get a $2.5 million dollar buyout.
Top names out there as possible Minnesota head coach candidates include Shaka Smart from VCU. Teague came to Minnesota from VCU and knows Smart very well. Flip Saunders, the former Timberwolves coach, doesn't have a coaching job, and has been mentioned as a possible candidate. Other coaches include Butler's Brad Stevens, Buzz Williams at Marquette, Jay Wright of Villanova and Fred Hoiberg of Iowa State.
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